A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Festus Keyamo, who is the spokesperson for the Presidential Campaign Council of the All Progressives Congress standard bearer, Bola Tinubu, has petitioned the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, and the Code of Conduct Bureau to arrest the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, over corruption allegations within the next 72 hours.
In a document obtained by our correspondent, Keyamo asked the chairmen of the anti-graft agencies to arrest or invite Atiku for questioning over alleged offences bordering on money laundering, criminal breach of trust and criminal misappropriation, conspiracy, and other offences against the code of conduct for public officials.
He also vowed to get a court injunction compelling the agencies to arrest or invite the former vice president for questioning, if they failed to act on the petition.
Noting that he was writing as a lawyer, a citizen, and as a former private prosecutor for the EFCC, Kenyamo said Nigerians had been worried over the recent revelations by a whistleblower and ex-aide to Atiku, Michael Achimugu, alleging that the former VP laundered money through some companies regarded as ‘Special Purpose Vehicles’, using trusted allies as shareholders and directors.
Keyamo said, “For about a week now, Nigerians have been in shock over the public revelations of a whistleblower, Mr. Michael Achimugu, who has provided the nation with evidence of letters of appointment by Atiku Abubakar, e-mails, documents, audio clips, sworn affidavit and his direct oral evidence as to how Atiku, who happens to be the presidential candidate of the PDP, during his tenure as Vice-President of Nigeria between 1999 and 2007, colluded with his then boss, ex-president Olusegun Obasanjo, to fleece the country and steal public funds using what he termed as ‘Special Purpose Vehicles.’
“Those SPVs were companies which Atiku admittedly registered upon assumption of office as the VP (with the approval of Obasanjo) using “trusted allies” as shareholders and directors.
“The purpose was to divert government contracts to these companies as “consultants” and then pay monies into these companies and use those monies to fund the PDP, their private businesses and family activities.”
Attaching certified true copies of the affidavit sworn to and released to the public by the whistleblower Achimugu, Keyamo asked the agencies to act with alacrity not minding Atiku’s current position as a presidential candidate.
While noting that the matter was of great national interest, Kenyamo made reference to the investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation into the allegation of misuse of private emails by Hillary Clinton when she was Secretary of State, during the 2016 presidential election in the United States of America.
He added, “In fact, the case (Clinton’s) was referred to the Justice Department for likely prosecution few weeks to actual voting.
“I understand that the law enforcement agencies may be reluctant to act simply because of the perception of persecution of a presidential candidate that this may evoke.
“However, facts are sacred. The facts so far presented to the world clearly indicate that Atiku has a case to answer. In other climes when such serious allegations arose in the middle of campaigns, the law enforcement agencies acted decisively.
“Take further notice that if you fail, refuse and/or neglect to act, I shall be proceeding to court to compel you to act.”